‘Eyesore’garages could be replaced by homes

AN “eyesore” block of garages in Redland could be demolished and replaced with six new houses. But some locals are worried it will add to parking problems in the area.

The garages off Cossins Road date back about 70 years. They back onto Redland Green in what planning consultants describe as a prime location.

Westbury Park Community Association say on first inspection they broadly accept the proposal, and local councillors say it could clear up a long running problem of dereliction.

But at the time of going to press three neighbours had submitted anonymous objections – mostly on parking grounds.

They all say that Cossins Road is one of the first roads people come to outside of the nearby Residents Parking Scheme – and as a result it sees “dangerous” parking behaviour, which they said impacts on children using the road as a school route.

One said: “Due to the adjacent parking zone this area is heavily congested with parked cars so this development would add to this congestion with added vehicles and the loss of off road parking facilities.”

Another voiced concerns about the effect on Redland Green. A third welcomed new housing, but said it would add to parking problems.

Currently there are 25 brick garages on the site in a U shape – and the plan involves demolishing 22 of them. 

Two years ago consultants Walsingham Planning submitted a “pre-application” proposal to build fourteen homes on the site. Their latest full planning application says it has taken council comments into account, and reduced the number to six.

They propose a row of five two-storey three-bedroom houses, backing onto Redland Green, with roof terraces overlooking the Green. And one single-storey three-bedroom “lodge house”.

There will also be seven parking spaces, and bike storage.

Walsingham say in their application the houses will form a “mews style” development, and will be “unobtrusive” to houses on Coldharbour Road which back onto the site.

They were due to hold a public meeting in late March to display the plans and answer residents’ questions.

Kevin Chidgey from WPCA said they were encouraging local people to come forward with comments, so potential objections can be considered.

He said: “We are seeking views from Community Association members on the proposed redevelopment of this unattractive site and that we have already noted a number of concerns from those living close to the site about the possible impact of on-street parking in Cossins Road and the loss of views to Redland Green.”

Bristol City Councillor for Redland, Martin Fodor, broadly welcomed plans to tidy up the site.

He said: “There were issues with dereliction in the past that had to be made safe, and this site has been identified for housing development in the draft local plan for some years. 

“We’ll be pressing for planners to secure the most sympathetic and sustainable design in keeping with the sensitive location overlooking the Redland Green Conservation Area.”

He said he hoped to gather local residents’ views at the consultation event. 

The planning application can be viewed on the Bristol City Council planning portal with the reference  23/00665/F